An Explainer on Sexual Harassment Laws in the U.S.

The Equal Opportunity Employment Commission (EEOC) collected $56.6 million from harassment cases in the 2018 fiscal year.

The consequences of failing to prevent harassment can be severe for individuals and companies alike. Hostile work environments lead to an unproductive workforce, increased turnover and harm to the company’s reputation. Companies may end up paying in more ways than one, with limited productivity and morale combined with a substantial price tag.

HR leaders must create supportive and open environments where employees feel safe to report any inappropriate conduct and where everyone understands the rules and norms around acceptable behavior.

The first step in creating such training strategy involves learning the relevant laws, the federal requirements, which form the basis of harassment prevention, and the specific, state versions, such as New York, California, Maine, Delaware and Connecticut.

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